Have another ? for you orchard gurus... is there anything (preventative maintenance wise) that I should be spraying my Apple, Pear, Peach, Plum, & Fig trees with for pests or diseases? If it helps I'm in the VA mountains, zone 6b, ~1,500' elevation. TIA!
This is a controversial area of orcharding. I spray with compost tea and sometimes with biodynamic horsetail extract. Some people spray with synthetics. Others don't because of the effect on the ecology and on their health. Still others try to use an extremely limited version of synthetics.
Your climate is more challenging for growing most fruit than here. My internet colleagues on the East Coast have slammed me many times because some of them believe it's necessary to use synthetics back there. I would check in with our highly esteemed Viron for a more informative update about spraying in VIrginia.